The Brooklyn Nets fired Jacque Vaughn on Monday after ending a disappointing first half of the season with a 50-point loss in Boston in their final game before the All-Star break.

About a year after giving Vaughn a contract extension, the Nets changed course and said an interim coach would be named soon.

The Nets dropped five of their final six games before the break to fall to 21-33, putting them in 11th place in the Eastern Conference. Their 136-86 loss to the Celtics on Wednesday was their worst defeat since moving to Brooklyn in 2012 and the second-worst in franchise history, and leading scorer Mikal Bridges seemed particularly frustrated in his postgame comments.

Vaughn finished 71-68 with the Nets, guiding them into the playoffs on two separate stints.

“This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one we feel is in the best interest of the team going forward,” general manager Sean Marks said in a statement. “Jacque has represented this organization with exemplary character and class for the past eight years. The consistent positivity and passion he poured into our team daily will remain with the players and staff he interacted with throughout his tenure.

Brooklyn’s slide in the standings has mostly taken place since the start of the new year. After improving to 15-15 shortly after Christmas, the Nets have gone 6-18 in their last 24 games. 

Vaughn, who joined the Nets as an assistant coach in 2016, became their head coach in November 2022 after the team fired Steve Nash. He was tabbed to help steer the ship with stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving after their slow start that season, but both players were eventually traded later in the season. The Nets went 43-32 with Vaughn as their head coach in 2022-23, reaching the playoffs as the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, but were swept in the first round by the Philadelphia 76ers.

Vaughn was also the Nets’ interim head coach in 2020 after they fired Kenny Atkinson.

The Associated Press contributed to this story. 

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